Analyzing Arguments Questions and Answers : Type 1

Directions to Solve

Read the paragraph carefully and determine the main point the author is trying to make. What conclusion can be drawn from the argument? Each paragraph is followed by five statements.One statement supports the author’s argument better than the others do.

1. One New York publisher has estimated that 50,000 to 60,000 people in the United States want an anthology that includes the complete works of William Shakespeare. And what accounts for this renewed interest in Shakespeare? As scholars point out, his psychological insights into both male and female characters are amazing even today.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. Shakespeare’s characters are more interesting than fictional characters today.
B. people even today are interested in Shakespeare’s work because of the characters.
C. academic scholars are putting together an anthology of Shakespeare’s work.
D. New Yorkers have a renewed interested in the work of Shakespeare.
E. Shakespeare was a psychiatrist as well as a playwright.

2. One of the warmest winters on record has put consumers in the mood to spend money. Spending is likely to be the strongest in thirteen years. During the month of February, sales of existing single-family homes hit an annual record rate of 4.75 million.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. consumer spending will be higher thirteen years from now than it is today.
B. more people buy houses in the month of February than in any other month.
C. during the winter months, the prices of single-family homes are the lowest.
D. there were about 4 million homes for sale during the month of February.
E. warm winter weather is likely to affect the rate of home sales.

3. Generation Xers are those people born roughly between 1965 and 1981. As employees, Generation Xers tend to be more challenged when they can carry out tasks independently. This makes Generation Xers the most entrepreneurial generation in history.
This paragraph best supports the statement that Generation Xers
A. work harder than people from other generations.
B. have a tendency to be self-directed workers
C. have an interest in making history
D. tend to work in jobs that require risk-taking behavior.
E. like to challenge their bosses work attitudes.

4. If you’re a fitness walker, there is no need for a commute to a health club. Your neighborhood can be your health club. You don’t need a lot of fancy equipment to get a good workout either. All you need is a well-designed pair of athletic shoes.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. fitness walking is a better form of exercise than weight lifting.
B. a membership in a health club is a poor investment.
C. walking outdoors provides a better workout than walking indoors.
D. fitness walking is a convenient and valuable form of exercise.
E. poorly designed athletic shoes can cause major foot injuries.

5. In the past, consumers would rarely walk into an ice cream store and order low-fat ice cream. But that isn’t the case today. An increasing health consciousness combined with a much bigger selection of tasty low-fat foods in all categories has made low-fat ice cream a very profitable item for ice cream store owners.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. low-fat ice cream produces more revenue than other low-fat foods.
B. ice cream store owners would be better off carrying only low-fat ice cream.
C. ice cream store owners no longer think that low-fat ice cream is an unpopular item.
D. low-fat ice cream is more popular than other kinds of ice cream.
E. consumers are fickle and it is impossible to please them
6. Today’s high school students spend too much time thinking about trivial and distracting matters such as fashion. Additionally, they often dress inappropriately on school grounds. Rather than spending time writing another detailed dress policy, we should make school uniforms mandatory. If students were required to wear uniforms, it would increase a sense of community and harmony in our schools and it would instill a sense of discipline in our students. Another positive effect would be that teachers and administrators would no longer have to act as clothing police, freeing them up to focus on more important issues.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. inappropriate clothing leads to failing grades.
B. students who wear school uniforms get into better colleges.
C. teachers and administrators spend at least 25% of their time enforcing the dress code.
D. students are not interested in being part of a community
E. school uniforms should be compulsory for high school students.

7. The criminal justice system needs to change. The system could be more just if it allowed victims the opportunity to confront the person who has harmed them. Also, mediation between victims and their offenders would give the offenders a chance to apologize for the harm they have done.
This paragraph best supports the statement that victims of a crime should
A. learn to forgive their offenders.
B. have the right to confront their offenders.
C. learn the art of mediation.
D. insist that their offenders be punished.
E. have the right to impose a sentence on their offenders.

8. A few states in this country are considering legislation that would prohibit schools from using calculators before the sixth grade. Other states take a different position. Some states are insisting on the purchase of graphing calculators for every student in middle school.
This paragraph best supports the statement that in this country
A. there are at least two opinions about the use of calculators in schools.
B. calculators are frequently a detriment to learning math.
C. state legislators are more involved in education than ever before.
D. the price of graphing calculators is less when schools buy in bulk.
E. the argument against calculators in schools is unfounded.

9. Today’s workforce has a new set of social values. Ten years ago, a manager who was offered a promotion in a distant city would not have questioned the move. Today, a manager in that same situation might choose family happiness instead of career advancement.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. most managers are not loyal to the corporations for which they work.
B. businesses today do not understand their employees needs.
C. employees social values have changed over the past ten years.
D. career advancement is not important to today’s business managers.
E. companies should require their employees to accept promotions.

10. It is well known that the world urgently needs adequate distribution of food, so that everyone gets enough. Adequate distribution of medicine is just as urgent. Medical expertise and medical supplies need to be redistributed throughout the world so that people in emerging nations will have proper medical care.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. the majority of the people in the world have never been seen by a doctor.
B. food production in emerging nations has slowed during the past several years.
C. most of the world’s doctors are selfish about giving time and money to the poor.
D. the medical-supply industry should step up production of its products.
E. many people who live in emerging nations are not receiving proper medical care


Analyzing Arguments Questions and Answers : Type 2


Directions to Solve

Choose the statement that is best supported by the information given in the question passage.

1.  Yoga has become a very popular type of exercise, but it may not be for everyone. Before you sign yourself up for a yoga class, you need to examine what it is you want from your fitness routine. If you’re looking for a high-energy, fast-paced aerobic workout, a yoga class might not be your best choice.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. yoga is more popular than high-impact aerobics.
B. before embarking on a new exercise regimen, you should think about your needs and desires.
C. yoga is changing the world of fitness in major ways
D. yoga benefits your body and mind
E. most people think that yoga isn’t a rigorous form of exercise.

2.  Human technology developed from the first stone tools about two and a half million years ago. At the beginning, the rate of development was slow. Hundreds of thousands of years passed without much change. Today, new technologies are reported daily on television and in newspapers.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. stone tools were not really technology.
B. stone tools were in use for two and a half million years
C. there is no way to know when stone tools first came into use.
D. In today’s world, new technologies are constantly being developed
E. none of the latest technologies is as significant as the development of stone tools.


3.  Mathematics allows us to expand our consciousness. Mathematics tells us about economic trends, patterns of disease, and the growth of populations. Math is good at exposing the truth, but it can also perpetuate misunderstandings and untruths. Figures have the power to mislead people.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. the study of mathematics is dangerous.
B. words are more truthful than figures.
C. the study of mathematics is more important than other disciplines.
D. the power of numbers is that they cannot lie.
E. figures are sometimes used to deceive people.

4.  In the 1966 Supreme Court decision Miranda v. Arizona, the court held that before the police can obtain statements from a person subjected to an interrogation, the person must be given a Miranda warning. This warning means that a person must be told that he or she has the right to remain silent during the police interrogation. Violation of this right means that any statement that the person makes is not admissible in a court hearing.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. police who do not warn persons of their Miranda rights are guilty of a crime.
B. a Miranda warning must be given before a police interrogation can begin.
C. the police may no longer interrogate persons suspected of a crime unless a lawyer is present.
D. the 1966 Supreme Court decision in Miranda should be reversed
E. persons who are interrogated by police should always remain silent until their lawyer comes


5.  During colonial times in America, juries were encouraged to ask questions of the parties in the courtroom. The jurors were, in fact, expected to investigate the facts of the case themselves. If jurors conducted an investigation today, we would throw out the case.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. juries are less important today than they were in colonial times.
B. jurors today are less interested in court cases than they were in colonial times.
C. courtrooms today are more efficient than they were in colonial times.
D. jurors in colonial times were more informed than jurors today.
E. the jury system in America has changed since colonial times.
6.  There are no effective boundaries when it comes to pollutants. Studies have shown that toxic insecticides that have been banned in many countries are riding the wind from countries where they remain legal. Compounds such as DDT and toxaphene have been found in remote places like the Yukon and other Arctic regions.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. toxic insecticides such as DDT have not been banned throughout the world.
B. more pollutants find their way into polar climates than they do into warmer areas
C. studies have proven that many countries have ignored their own antipollution laws.
D. DDT and toxaphene are the two most toxic insecticides in the world.
E. even a worldwide ban on toxic insecticides would not stop the spread of DDT pollution.


7.  The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution protects citizens against unreasonable searches and seizures. No search of a person’s home or personal effects may be conducted without a written search warrant issued on probable cause. This means that a neutral judge must approve the factual basis justifying a search before it can be conducted.
This paragraph best supports the statement that the police cannot search a person’s home or private papers unless they have
A. legal authorization
B. direct evidence of a crime.
C. read the person his or her constitutional rights.
D. a reasonable belief that a crime has occurred.
E. requested that a judge be present.

8.  Obesity is a serious problem in this country. Research suggests that obesity can lead to a number of health problems including diabetes, asthma, and heart disease. Recent research has even indicated that there may be a relationship between obesity and some types of cancer. Major public health campaigns that increase awareness and propose simple lifestyle changes that will, with diligence and desire, eliminate or least mitigate the incidence of obesity are a crucial first step in battling this critical problem.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. public health campaigns that raise consciousness and propose lifestyle changes are a productive way to fight obesity.
B. obesity is the leading cause of diabetes in our country.
C. people in our country watch too much television and do not exercise enough.
D. a decline in obesity would radically decrease the incidence of asthma.
E. fast-food restaurants and unhealthy school lunches contribute greatly to obesity.

9.  Critical reading is a demanding process. To read critically, you must slow down your reading and, with pencil in hand, perform specific operations on the text. Mark up the text with your reactions, conclusions, and questions. When you read, become an active participant.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. critical reading is a slow, dull, but essential process
B. the best critical reading happens at critical times in a person’s life.
C. readers should get in the habit of questioning the truth of what they read.
D. critical reading requires thoughtful and careful attention.
E. critical reading should take place at the same time each day.

10.  Walk into any supermarket or pharmacy and you will find several shelves of products designed to protect adults and children from the sun. Additionally, a host of public health campaigns have been created, including National Skin Cancer Awareness Month, that warn us about the sun’s damaging UV rays and provide guidelines about protecting ourselves. While warnings about the sun’s dangers are frequent, a recent survey found that fewer than half of all adults adequately protect themselves from the sun.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. children are better protected from the sun’s dangerous rays than adults
B. sales of sun protection products are at an all-time high.
C. adults are not heeding the warnings about the dangers of sun exposure seriously enough.
D. more adults have skin cancer now than ever before
E. there is not enough information disseminated about the dangers of sun exposure.


Analyzing Arguments Questions and Answers : Type 3


Directions to Solve

Choose the statement that is best supported by the information given in the question passage.

1. For too long, school cafeterias, in an effort to provide food they thought would be appetizing to young people, mimicked fast-food restaurants, serving items such as burgers and fries, pizza, hot dogs, and fried chicken. School districts nationwide are now addressing this trend by incorporating some simple and inexpensive options that will make cafeteria lunches healthier while still appealing to students.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. school cafeterias have always emphasized nutritional guidelines over any other considerations.
B. young people would rather eat in a school cafeteria than a local fast-food restaurant.
C. school lunch menus are becoming healthier due to major new initiatives on the part of school districts.
D. it is possible to make school lunches both healthier and appealing without spending a great deal of money and undertaking a radical transformation.
E. vegetarian lunch options would greatly improve the nutritional value of the school lunch program.

2. Forest fires feed on decades-long accumulations of debris and leap from the tops of young trees into the branches of mature trees. Fires that jump from treetop to treetop can be devastating. In old-growth forests, however, the shade of mature trees keeps thickets of small trees from sprouting, and the lower branches of mature trees are too high to catch the flames.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. forest fire damage is reduced in old-growth forests.
B. small trees should be cut down to prevent forest fires.
C. mature trees should be thinned out to prevent forest fires
D. forest fires do the most damage in old-growth forests.
E. old-growth forests have a larger accumulation of forest debris.

3. During the last six years, the number of practicing physicians has increased by about 20%. During the same time period, the number of healthcare managers has increased by more than 600%. These percentages mean that many doctors have lost the authority to make their own schedules, determine the fees that they charge, and decide on prescribed treatments.
This paragraph best supports the statement that doctors
A. resent the interference of healthcare managers.
B. no longer have adequate training.
C. care a great deal about their patients.
D. are less independent than they used to be.
E. are making a lot less money than they used to make.

4. By the time they reach adulthood, most people can perform many different activities involving motor skills. Motor skills involve such diverse tasks as riding a bicycle, threading a needle, and cooking a dinner. What all these activities have in common is their dependence on precision and timing of muscular movement.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. most adults have not refined their motor skills.
B. all adults know how to ride a bicycle.
C. refined motor skills are specifically limited to adults.
D. children perform fewer fine motor activities in a day than adults do.
E. threading a needle is a precise motor skill.

5. Most Reality TV centers on two common motivators: fame and money. The shows transform waitresses, hairdressers, investment bankers, counselors, and teachers, to name a few, from obscure figures to house-hold names. A lucky few successfully parlay their fifteen minutes of fame into celebrity. The luckiest stars of Reality TV also reap huge financial rewards for acts including eating large insects, marrying someone they barely know, and revealing their innermost thoughts to millions of people.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. the stars of Reality TV are interested in being rich and famous.
B. Reality TV is the best thing that has happened to network television in a long time.
C. for Reality TV stars, fame will last only as long as their particular television show.
D. traditional dramas and sitcoms are being replaced by Reality TV programming at an alarming rate.
E. Reality TV shows represent a new wave of sensationalistic, low quality programming.
6. The image of a knitter as an older woman sitting in a comfortable, old-fashioned living room with a basket of yarn at her feet and a bun in her hair is one of the past. As knitting continues to become more popular and increasingly trendy, it is much more difficult to describe the average knitter. Knitters today might be 18, 28, 40, or 65. They might live in a big urban center and take classes in a knit- ting shop that doubles as a café or they may gather in suburban coffee shops to support one another in knitting and other aspects of life. They could be college roommates knitting in their dorm room or two senior citizens knitting in a church hall. Even men are getting in the act. It would be incredibly difficult to come up with an accurate profile of a contemporary knitter to replace that image of the old woman with the basket of yarn!
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. people are returning to knitting in an attempt to reconnect with simpler times.
B. knitting is now more of a group activity, as opposed to an individual hobby.
C. creating an accurate profile of a particular type of person depends on the people in this group having traits and characteristics in common.
D. today’s knitters are much less accomplished than knitters of the past.
E. young people are turning to knitting in record numbers.

7. Close-up images of Mars by the Mariner 9 probe indicated networks of valleys that looked like the stream beds on Earth. These images also implied that Mars once had an atmosphere that was thick enough to trap the sun’s heat. If this were true, something happened to Mars billions of years ago that stripped away the planet’s atmosphere.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. Mars now has little or no atmosphere.
B. Mars once had a thicker atmosphere than Earth does.
C. the Mariner 9 probe took the first pictures of Mars.
D. Mars is closer to the sun than Earth is.
E. Mars is more mountainous than Earth is.

8. Originating in the 1920s, the Pyramid scheme is one of the oldest con games going. Honest people are often pulled in, thinking the scheme is a legitimate investment enterprise. The first customer to “fall for” the Pyramid scheme will actually make big money and will therefore persuade friends and relatives to join also. The chain then continues with the con artist who originated the scheme pocketing, rather than investing, the money. Finally, the pyramid collapses, but by that time, the scam artist will usually have moved out of town, leaving no forwarding address.
This paragraph best supports the statement that
A. it is fairly easy to spot a Pyramid scheme in the making.
B. he first customer of a Pyramid scheme is the most gullible.
C. the people who set up Pyramid schemes are able to fool honest people.
D. the Pyramid scheme had its heyday in the 1920s, but it’s making a comeback.
E. the Pyramid scheme got its name from its structure.

Analyzing Arguments Questions and Answers : Type 4


Directions to Solve

Read the below passage carefully and answer the questions:

Some groups want to outlaw burning the flag. They say that people have fought and died for the flag and that citizens of the United States ought to respect that. But I say that respect cannot be leg-islated. Also, most citizens who have served in the military did not fight for the flag, they fought for what the flag represents. Among the things the flag represents is freedom of speech, which includes, I believe, the right for a citizen to express displeasure with the government by burning the flag in protest.

1. Which of the following is similar to the argument made by the speaker?
A. The rich should not be allowed to “buy” politicians, so the Congress should enact campaign finance reform.
B. The idea of freedom of religion also means the right not to participate in religion, so mandated school prayer violates freedom of religion.
C. The Constitution guarantees freedom to own property, so taxes should be illegal.
D. Convicted felons should not have their convictions overturned on a technicality.
E. In order to understand what may be constitutional today, one needs to look at what the laws were when the Constitution was enacted.

2. Which of the following, if true, would weaken the speaker’s argument?
A. An action is not considered a part of freedom of speech.
B. People who burn the flag usually commit other crimes as well.
C. The flag was not recognized by the government until 1812.
D. State flags are almost never burned
E. Most people are against flag burning.

3. Which of the following best expresses the main point of the passage?
A. Only veterans care about the flag-burning issue.
B. Flag burning almost never happens, so outlawing it is a waste of time.
C. Flag burning will be a very important issue in the next election.
D. To outlaw flag burning is to outlaw what the flag represents.
E. Burning the flag should only be illegal when it is done in foreign countries.


Analyzing Arguments Questions and Answers : Type 5

Directions to Solve

Read the below passage carefully and answer the questions:

Giving children computers in grade school is a waste of money and teachers time. These children are too young to learn how to use computers effectively and need to spend time on learning the basics, like arithmetic and reading. After all, a baby has to crawl before she can walk.

1. Which of the following, if true, would strengthen the speaker’s argument?
A. studies showing computers are expensive
B. research on the effect of computer games on children
C. examples of high school students who use computers improperly
D. proof that the cost of computers is coming down
E. evidence that using computers makes learning to read difficult

2. Which of the following, if true, would weaken the speaker’s argument?
A. a demonstration that computers can be used to teach reading and arithmetic
B. analysis of the cost-effectiveness of new computers versus repairing old computers
C. examples of adults who do not know how to use computers
D. recent grade reports of students in the computer classes
E. a visit to a classroom where computers are being used

3. Which of the following methods of argument is used in the previous passage?
A. a specific example that illustrates the speaker’s point
B. attacking the beliefs of those who disagree with the speaker
C. relying on an analogy to prove the speaker’s point
D. displaying statistics that back up the speaker’s point
E. comparing different methods of learning

Analyzing Arguments Questions and Answers : Type 6


Directions to Solve

Read the below passage carefully and answer the questions:

Quinn: Our state is considering raising the age at which a person can get a driver’s license to eighteen. This is unfair because the age has been sixteen for many years and sixteen-year-olds today are no less responsible than their parents and grandparents were at sixteen.Many young people today who are fourteen and fifteen years old are preparing to receive their licenses by driving with a learner’s permit and a licensed driver, usually one of their parents. It would not be fair to suddenly say they have to wait two more years.

Dakota: It is true that people have been allowed to receive a drivers license at sixteen for generations. However, in recent years, the increase in traffic means drivers face more dangers than ever and must be ready to respond to a variety of situations. The fact that schools can no longer afford to teach drivers education results in too many young drivers who are not prepared to face the traffic conditions of today.

1. What is the point at issue between Quinn and Dakota?
A. whether sixteen-year-olds should be required to take drivers education before being issued a license
B. whether schools ought to provide drivers education to fourteen- and fifteen-year-old students
C. whether the standards for issuing drivers licenses should become more stringent
D. whether sixteen-year-olds are prepared to drive in today’s traffic conditions
E. whether parents are able to do a good job teaching their children to drive

2. On what does Quinn rely in making her argument?
A. statistics
B. emotion
C. fairness
D. anecdotes
E. actualities

3. On what does Dakota rely in making her argument?
A. statistics
B. emotion
C. fairness
D. anecdotes
E. actualities





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